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WOULD I WANT TO BE A VAMPIRE?
by Alex Bledsoe
Lately it seems I've been doing nothing but writing blog posts about vampires to raise awareness of my new vampire novel, I've written about the book from the perspective of its place in the lineage of literary vampires, its relation to its predecessor (Blood Groove), the influences of its setting (1975 Memphis), even why I'd want to write this sort of novel with the market is glutted with them. But it occurred to me that no one's ever asked me whether I
would like to be vampire myself.
I think a lot of people, maybe most, think they would jump at the chance. The perks are legendary: immortality, superhuman strength, domination of others. Depending on what mythology you're using, you may or may not be able to endure sunlight, but since most cool things happen in the dark, it might be a fair trade. Certainly if you're a vampire of the True Blood school, your evenings are positively filled with extracurricular activities.
But there are other aspects, more subtle, that are what give me pause. The dependence on blood, for one. In Love at First Bite Dracula complains, "How would you like to dine on nothing but a warm liquid protein diet while all around you people are eating lamb chops, potato chips, Mallomars?" It's a good question, because really, that's it: blood, or starvation. No substitutions, no impulsive stops
for greasy fast food. Some stories get around this (the titular substance of True Blood, for example), but ultimately it's such a defining part of a vampire's existence everything else pales in comparison (no pun intended). I mean, sure, I like pizza once a week, but I also like to vary the flavor. That wouldn't be an option as a
Not to mention the moral issue of where that blood comes from. Most vampires take their blood from unwilling victims, and many drain their victims dry. It takes the slogan "meat is murder" to a new literal level.
There's also your biological status as a corpse. Unless you're one of those newfangled scientific vampires, you were once alive, and now you're not. You can't say "undead" without "dead," and that state must feel weird. Would you lose your sense of things like temperature, speed, even time? Without the sense of pain, would you start hurting yourself just for the hell of it?
undead corpse lock you into your personality the same way it does your physical appearance?
If I write another vampire novel, I'll try to address some of these questions. But for now, I can honestly say I have no interest in really being a vampire. As Dracula also says in Love at First Bite, "How would you like to go around dressed like a head waiter for seven hundred years?"
No thanks. I'm definitely the flannel-and-denim type.
Leave a comment about the post. One lucky reader will win signed copies of Alex's vampire novels Blood Groove and The Girls with Games of Blood.
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The contest is open worldwide and ends August 3, 2010.
Read a REVIEW of The Girls with Games of Blood
Read a REVIEW of Blood Groove
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